Complaints show lack of cultural education

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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The story makes it seem like there is nightly Old West unrest happening on Madison Street. [Robinson's Ribs faces neighbors' ire over DJ nights, News, Aug. 15] 

One woman said, "I moved to Oak Park because I was pregnant," noting that she lived for years in the city of Chicago where "more noise is expected." Maybe she lived around Wrigley Field where (mostly white) young, intoxicated people come out of the ball park, toss trash, use alleys to urinate in, and friends howl from the excitement of the game, stimulated with alcohol. 

Oak Park is not a quiet village anymore. It's being over-developed and restaurants and nightlife are coming in. Maybe a new board can be created to select which kinds of businesses are good enough to be allowed in Oak Park.  

It the 1980s, Mike Royko wanted to find out who made the best BBQ Ribs. Charlie Robinson won and soon after opened a place in Oak Park. He moved locations and now has a bar and grill with a DJ.   

I don't recall reading police reports about problems at the new location. Now a phone call and a dozen complaints in the Wednesday Journal may be turning something into more than it really may be.  

The story gives images of bikers hanging out, revving engines, patrons breaking alcohol bottles and trashing the area with cars parked illegally on the streets.

Maybe I missed the reports, "Oak Park invaded by motorcycle gang members," and "Alcohol spills as engines rev."  

What I don't understand is how a village considered above average in education can miss out on being culturally educated. It seems the only way to achieve cultural diversity is if all races act the same.

All races dress differently, eat different foods, and even celebrate differently. Those are called cultural differences. Where the dividing line comes is if anyone, regardless of race, is not following the laws. Since I did not read police reports where people were behaving illegally, then I question why this story was published.  

No pictures go along with the story. Some phone video from the neighbors sent in to Wednesday Journal might have made this seem like a threat to Oak Park.  

Charlie Robinson, who has been a business owner for decades and worships in Oak Park, is wondering if there are racial elements to the complaints. How could any culturally educated person expect Charlie, a man from Mississippi, not to think that way.

Premise checks by police are common when a few complaints come in. The police department will put a watch on an area. If Charlie doesn't know that, then he is going to feel he is being targeted by police.  

Madison Street is where the concrete trucks are ready to pour. Is Robinson's Ribs not the right fit anymore? Isn't writing a story about how things are out of hand the same thing Trump did?

Go to DJ night and find out for yourself. It now has been planted in the minds of those who read the story that there is a problem instead of adding diversity.

Bill Maxwell

Oak Park

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